Antigen recognition through the T cell receptor (TCR) αβ heterodimer is one of the primary determinants of the adaptive immune response. Vaccines activate naïve T cells with high specificity to expand and differentiate into memory T cells. However, antigen-specific memory CD4 T cells exist in unexposed antigen-naïve hosts. In this study, we use high-throughput sequencing of memory CD4 TCRβ repertoire and machine learning to show that individuals with preexisting vaccine-reactive memory CD4 T cell clonotypes elicited earlier and higher antibody titers and mounted a more robust CD4 T cell response to hepatitis B vaccine. In addition, integration of TCRβ sequence patterns into a hepatitis B epitope-specific annotation model can predict which individuals will have an early and more vigorous vaccine-elicited immunity. Thus, the presence of preexisting memory T cell clonotypes has a significant impact on immunity and can be used to predict immune responses to vaccination.
The sequencing data that support the findings of this study have been deposited on Zenodo (https://doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.3989144).
Preexisting memory CD4 T cells in naïve individuals confer robust immunity upon vaccinationzenodo - 10.5281/zenodo.3989144.
In vitro T cell expansionflowrepository - FR-FCM-Z2TM.
ex vivo CD4 T cell assayflowrepository - FR-FCM-Z2TL.
Epitope mappingflowrepository - FR-FCM-Z2TN.
- George Elias
- Esther Bartholomeus
- Nicolas De Neuter
- Pieter Meysman
- Kris Laukens
- Benson Ogunjimi
- Aisha Souquette
- Paul G Thomas
- Aisha Souquette
- Paul G Thomas
The funders had no role in study design, data collection and interpretation, or the decision to submit the work for publication.
Human subjects: Protocols involving the use of human tissues were approved by the Ethics Committee of Antwerp University Hospital and University of Antwerp (Antwerp, Belgium), and all of the experiments were performed in accordance with the protocols
- Armita Nourmohammad, University of Washington, United States
© 2022, Elias et al.
This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License permitting unrestricted use and redistribution provided that the original author and source are credited.
Age-associated DNA methylation in blood cells convey information on health status. However, the mechanisms that drive these changes in circulating cells and their relationships to gene regulation are unknown. We identified age-associated DNA methylation sites in six purified blood-borne immune cell types (naive B, naive CD4+ and CD8+ T cells, granulocytes, monocytes, and NK cells) collected from healthy individuals interspersed over a wide age range. Of the thousands of age-associated sites, only 350 sites were differentially methylated in the same direction in all cell types and validated in an independent longitudinal cohort. Genes close to age-associated hypomethylated sites were enriched for collagen biosynthesis and complement cascade pathways, while genes close to hypermethylated sites mapped to neuronal pathways. In silico analyses showed that in most cell types, the age-associated hypo- and hypermethylated sites were enriched for ARNT (HIF1β) and REST transcription factor (TF) motifs, respectively, which are both master regulators of hypoxia response. To conclude, despite spatial heterogeneity, there is a commonality in the putative regulatory role with respect to TF motifs and histone modifications at and around these sites. These features suggest that DNA methylation changes in healthy aging may be adaptive responses to fluctuations of oxygen availability.
Infection with Influenza A virus (IAV) causes the well-known symptoms of the flu, including fever, loss of appetite, and excessive sleepiness. These responses, mediated by the brain, will normally disappear once the virus is cleared from the system, but a severe respiratory virus infection may cause long-lasting neurological disturbances. These include encephalitis lethargica and narcolepsy. The mechanisms behind such long lasting changes are unknown. The hypothalamus is a central regulator of the homeostatic response during a viral challenge. To gain insight into the neuronal and non-neuronal molecular changes during an IAV infection, we intranasally infected mice with an H1N1 virus and extracted the brain at different time points. Using single-nucleus RNA sequencing (snRNA-seq) of the hypothalamus, we identify transcriptional effects in all identified cell populations. The snRNA-seq data showed the most pronounced transcriptional response at 3 days past infection, with a strong downregulation of genes across all cell types. General immune processes were mainly impacted in microglia, the brain resident immune cells, where we found increased numbers of cells expressing pro-inflammatory gene networks. In addition, we found that most neuronal cell populations downregulated genes contributing to the energy homeostasis in mitochondria and protein translation in the cytosol, indicating potential reduced cellular and neuronal activity. This might be a preventive mechanism in neuronal cells to avoid intracellular viral replication and attack by phagocytosing cells. The change of microglia gene activity suggest that this is complemented by a shift in microglia activity to provide increased surveillance of their surroundings.